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Thursday, November 8, 2012

Halloween 2012 : Oompa Loompa DIY

I'm super proud of this DIY Oompa Loompa costume. The shirt and pants were purchased ($6 each from Old Navy!) but were heavily modified. I also bought a skein of green yarn ($5), 2 sheets of white and 1 sheet of brown felt ($.50 total), white pom poms ($2 for four, but only used two), brown fabric paint ($1.50), and face paint ($4) so $26 in total (but of that, the $12 for the shirt and pants hardly counts because they will be reused). It was DIY in the easiest sense of the word - nothing took any particular skills and it was mostly held together with safety pins (because I am cheap and wanted to be able to use the shirt and pants afterward, so didn't want to make any permanent alterations).

I used this picture as inspiration:

And then created this costume:

My DIY Oompa Loompa Costume (Toddler Version)

Wig: We had a white crocheted hat that I colored brown/green with markers (so if any of the hat showed through it wouldn't be as obvious) and I looped hundreds of strands of green yarn through each crocheted hole. I used all but maybe two feet of the yarn. She happily wore this all night!

Shirt: No modifications to this, just a shirt purchased on sale at Old Navy.

Collar and cuffs: I massively, massively made this harder for myself than it had to be by making two critical mistakes: first, I sewed the cuffs into a circle before putting the brown stripes on them, meaning I had to hand-sew them since I couldn't fit the circular tubes through the sewing machine. Second, obviously her head would not fit through it once it was sewn shut. DUH.  So my failed steps were: cut the cuff and collar shapes out of white felt, then sewed them shut to encircle her wrists and neck. Hand-sew brown stripes of felt onto the cuffs. Realize her head couldn't fit through the collar if it was sewn shut, so rip out the seam and use safety pins to close it.  If I was a better planner, I would have cut the white shapes from the felt, sewn the brown stripes on with the machine (or even glued them on), and added velcro or snaps to the neck collar. Once they were done, I used safety pins to pin them to the shirt and keep them in place (as you can see from the pictures, I should have added a safety pin in front as well to hold the collar down).

Suspenders: Each one was two shorter strips of felt sewn together to make one long strip. These were safey pinned to the shirt (not attached to the pants at all, for ease of dressing/undressing).

Pants: I got a pair of Old Navy fleece pants (on sale!) and folded the pant legs up inside themselves, to both make them shorter and create a pocket inside. I pinned the fold with safety pins to keep it in place.  I then formed newspaper into a triangular shape and put it in the pocket created by the fold to create the peaks of the pants.

Buttons: I cut four circles (two for the front and two for the back) out of brown felt and loosely sewed them onto the pants so they could be easily cut out later. 

Leggings: I painted stripes with fabric paint onto a pair of cream BabyLegs that we already owned.

Shoe puffs: White pom-poms with fabric paint swirls. I then used a needle to thread a string through them and tied them to a pair of her shoes.

Face paint: I bought face paint sticks to draw on white eyebrows and orange circles on her cheeks. It wasn't quite the same effect as a whole orange face, but I didn't want to deal with the mess that would come from her touching or rubbing her face, and I didn't know if she'd sit still long enough to do her whole face.  

 The darn collar on her shirt flipped up as I was taking these ones.

And of course, the one that shows the costume perfectly with a great smile is out of focus. That's life with a one-year-old for you!

And below are some really crappy in-action shots. I took her to show off at the great-grandparents (both our parents had to work that night so they got a re-do the next day), then brought her home to Chris so we could trick-or-treat at a few neighbors' houses. Not for candy, but just to say we did.  Chris pulled out the dad move of bringing a flashlight with us, which just warmed my heart completely for some inexplicable reason.

What we didn't anticipate was her LOVING it so much that we kept going around the whole block, hitting maybe 20 houses. She went up to each and every one, even the houses with scary decorations and people in costumes. We could have kept going much longer, but I wanted to hand out candy at our house because I thought she'd also love that (how does that work when you have older kids that want to go out longer??).  She was so proud, carrying her little bucket around and wouldn't let us help her with it at all. When it came time to sit on the porch and hand out candy, she was also in heaven, saying "Hi!" to everyone who came up, trying to give out candy from her own bucket, and waving, blowing kisses, and saying "Bye!" to them as they left. Since this is my space, I'll go ahead and brag - multiple people told us she was the cutest trick-or-treater with the best costume they'd seen all night.  I'd have to agree (I mean, of course I do!)!

And some other random Halloween shots (I love the idea of carving the year into a pumpkin each year!)...

And finally, last year versus this year, with the same hat and same faux pumpkin.


  1. OMG!! That is the cutest Halloween costume EVER!!!

  2. That is an amazing Halloween costume. Seriously great. I'm so jealous that you were able to get such good pictures of her in it too. We had a (store bought) unicorn costume for Kaia and she WOULD NOT keep the head piece on, so every shot I have is a blurry one of her ripping it off. Only 15 kids came to our house and our cool pumpkins (I did a wolf howling and Brian did a big pumpkin eating one of those little pumpkin goards) didn't even get the oogling they deserved. Oh well...maybe next year!

  3. She gets my vote for best costume!

  4. Great costume, great photos, great kid (and great parents!) The two of her kind of running in your yard are big hits at work!

    How do you manage when a kid wants to trick or treat and you want to hand out candy? You should remember this from your childhood. One parent is stuck at home and gets to see all the kids in their fun costumes, the other has to schlump all over the place but gets to see their kid have a blast.

  5. Thank you so much for posting this! I followed some of your directions and made a similar costume for my daughter this year, and it is absolutely the cutest thing I've ever made! Your directions made it so easy. Thanks again!